tv CNN Newsroom Live CNN January 8, 2021 1:00am-2:00am PST
hello, and welcome to our viewers joining us here in the united states and all around the world. you're watching "cnn newsroom," i'm michael holmes, appreciate your company. democrats calling for impeachment, republicans distancing themselves, and criminal charges coming after the u.s. capitol attack that has claimed another life, a police officer who died from his injuries. donald trump apparently
feeling the pressure finally promising an orderly transition of power. a lot of people say too little, too late. plus, how different the policing of the pro trump riot looked from the black lives matter demonstrations. what's behind this epic security failure. a capitol hill police officer has become the fifth person to die as a result of wednesday's deadly pro trump riot at the u.s. capitol. police say officer brian sicknick died from injuries he received while quote physically engaging with protesters. a woman rioter was also fatally shot by police after u.s. president donald trump told his supporters to march to the capitol and quote show strength.
three other people died of medical conditions. on thursday, the president belatedly condemning the violence. >> america is and must always be a nation of law and order. the demonstrators who infiltrated the capitol have defiled the seat of american democracy. to those who engaged in the acts of violence and destruction, you do not represent our country. we have just been through an intense election and emotions are high, but now tempers must be cooled and calm restored. >> numerous administration officials have now resigned in protest including education secretary betsy devos, and transportation secretary elaine chao. in her resignation letter, devos at least partly blaming the president for wednesday's deadly violence writing this quote there is no mistaking the impact your rhetoric had on the situation, and it is the
inflection point for me. donald trump will only be president for 12 more days, but many u.s. officials and lawmakers are so upset and angry about the deadly breach of the capitol on wednesday that they're questioning whether president trump should be removed from office before january 20. for that, here's kaitlan collins. >> reporter: this was the first time that we've seen the president come out on camera and say that there is going to be a peaceful transition of power when joe biden takes office. even if he did not mention joe biden by name, this is the first time we've seen this kind of language from the president. it's basically a non concession, concession speech, probably as good as we're going to get from donald trump. it comes after he spent the day listening to calls coming from capitol hill and not just from democrats for his removal from office in these waning days of his administration, led by house speaker nancy pelosi who is calling on the vice president
mike pence to invoke the 25th amendment, calling on the cabinet, signaling out some of the cabinet secretaries by name, though we should note that we have spoken to the vice president's office. they have not responded to what the vice president plans to do, but an administration official did say he has not discussed invoking the 25th amendment with any of the cabinet members. however, those cabinet members are dwindling. we are now seeing at least two of them resign in the wake of president's response to that, that is elaine chao, the transportation secretary who is also married to the senate majority leader mitch mcconnell but also the education secretary, betsy devos who submitted her resignation letter late last night and was talking about the accomplishments of the trump administration but did say at one point, this is what we should be talking about but quote, there is no mistaking the impact your rhetoric had on the situation and it is the infection point for me saying that was the final straw for her, and that is what is leading her to leave her job with just two weeks left in the trump administration, and of course
the big question right now is whether or not there are going to be more of them. ka kaitlan collins, cnn, the white house. for many democrats, the president's condemnation of wednesday's violence was too little too late. one senator doubting he was even sincere. have a listen. >> it was very clear that he was reading off a teleprompter under extreme pressure, and once the teleprompter is gone and the pressure is off, i think he'll revert to his usual self of spewing lies and even in the teleprompter speech he lied about the national guard being deployed. >> if the 25th amendment was to mean anything, if it was ever important, it is exactly for this kind of moment for which it is written when an unhinged president has demonstrably abandoned his post. >> when you're already talking about the 25th amendment, when you were talking about impeachment, when you're seeing resignations from long time
associates of donald trump, he is catching on that he is becoming increasingly isolated, people are not supporting him, and he's going to have to be on good behavior. i hope that is the case. >> meanwhile, many leaders in the republican party are distancing themselves from the president, seeing wednesday's events as a final straw. on thursday, representative adam kingsinger became the first republican member of congress to call for the president's removal from office. >> the president cost us. the president is unfit, and the president is unwell. and the president must now relinquish control of the executive branch voluntarily or involuntarily. >> others in the party are still pushing the president's baseless claims of election fraud, however. one of the most prominent of those is texas senator ted cruz.
here's what he told the houston television station ktrk. >> the president's language and rhetoric often goes too far. i think yesterday in particular the president's language and rhetoric crossed a line, and it was reckless. i disagree with it. and i have disagreed with the president's language and rhetoric for the last four years, and i've said so many many times. if you look to what i have said you will not find me using the same language or rhetoric. what i have said is that serious claims of illegality need to be considered, they need to be adjudicated, they need to be considered fairly based on the facts and based on the evidence. that's very different than the things the president is saying. >> cnn's ma knew raj enu raju w. >> reporter: extraordinary moves under discussion on capitol hill
to try to make donald trump the first president in american history who could get impeached twice. now, the house speaker nancy pelosi is seriously considering bringing an impeachment vote to the floor quickly. much quicker than the 2019 impeachment of donald trump that took several months to play out. that's how typically it happens, but now they're looking at bypassing the committees all together, bringing a quick vote to the floor and getting it done in just a matter of days. there's still some time that needs to play out. they have not made any final decisions, if that's the way they're going to proceed. it's uncertain what joe biden is going to do, and on top of that, the first thing the democrats want is for vice president mike pence to invoke the 25th amendment along with the cabinet to essentially use the 25th amendment under the constitution, this extraordinary power to push the president out of office. democrat after democrat was
calling on pence to move ahead with the 25th amendment in the aftermath of the president inciting those deadly riots in the capitol earlier this week. there's no indication that is the route that pence is going to go, and so if he does not do that, then the democrats say well then they may impeach president trump. there's one problem, there's 12 days left in donald trump's presidency, so even if the democrats have a quick vote, presumably next week, if they were to do that, getting an impeachment trial in the united states senate which is controlled by republicans until january 20th, that's not going to happen quickly if the republicans don't want to do that, and they need 2/3 majority in the united states senate to remove the president from office, 67 votes in the chamber currently controlled with 52 republicans at the moment with david perdue of georgia no longer a united states senator. so it would be a very difficult road to go down to try to get
the president removed from office unless there is significant bipartisan support. at the moment they're not there yet. republicans are angry at donald trump, they are not there yet about pushing him out of office. >> manu raju there. now, earlier i asked cnn political analyst ron brownstein if he thinks donald trump would actually be removed from office? >> i don't think the 25th amendment will be invoked. i don't think republicans in the senate will convict and remove him from office, but i do think it is possible that democrats will impeach him. again, if this is not impeachable behavior, what is? >> where does this -- you and i have talked a lot about the republican party and trump, where does all of this leave the republican party? what happened wednesday but really the last four years, what damage has been done by centering the party around one man and of course trumpism doesn't end magically january 20? >> right.
it's complicated because trump has strengthened the republican hold on nonurban, noncollege and evangelical white america. he is enormously popular outside of the major metro areas and, you know, republicans, he held, you know, in the states that he won again in 2020. he beat back democratic challenges in the senate that were funded at historically unprecedented levels in places like iowa and north carolina and south carolina. and so on. but the price of that was very visible again on display in georgia this week which is that he has exiled the republican party from the fast growing and diverse metro areas, now really everywhere in the country. >> ron brownstein speaking to me earlier. now, rioters at the u.s. capitol were met with little force. compare this to what protesters for racial justice were met with several l months ago. why many are calling it a double
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on capitol hill wednesday, but many people are already asking how the situation could have gotten so out of control. here's brian todd with that. >> reporter: a beleaguered officer in the capitol falls back in the face of a crowd of intruders. u.s. capitol police under scrutiny for being under man and over run. >> that was a massive failure, and we need to get to the bottom of how that happened. >> reporter: lawmakers grateful to officers who helped them. >> people were fearing their lives. >> demanding answers. >> why were they overwhelmed, everyone knew this was going to happen. why weren't they tracking social media? why didn't they erect the barriers around the capitol that are present now. >> reporter: one problem, not calling up enough personnel says a former d.c. police chief. >> they can bring in the metropolitan police, police
agencies from maryland and virginia to help them. obviously the national guard. >> reporter: the city and the national guard say they sent help as soon as possible. and back up eventually arrived. but sproradically and in small numbers in first. in june, by contrast, federal guards were out in force, well ahead of black lives matter protests. another mistake, preparing for a terrorist attack instead of a violent mob. >> what we probably needed was less long gonuns, and more riot control. >> reporter: and not anticipating how many protesters would come. >> these right wing groups that made it very clear that they were going to be there, i mean, everything was in place. how could you be possibly caught off guard. >> reporter: also under scrutiny, how the rioters were treated. some officers criticized for giving away too easily or one taking a selfie with the mob.
a far cry from how black lives matter protesters were violently clear cleared out. >> black lives protesters were perceived as very threatening and for some reason these weren't. >> reporter: the city focused on their responsibilities. >> i needed mpd to focus on law enforcement activities and being able to respond to any hot spots. >> reporter: now with joe biden's inauguration just two weeks away, 6,200 national guard are arriving in d.c., and tall fencing is going up around the capitol, along with pledges of tighter security. before word came of his resignation, capitol hill police chief steven sund defended the actions of his department, saying his officers responded valiantly to thousands of intruders. they were attacked with chemime
pipes and chemicals. brian todd, cnn washington. >> earlier, cnn talked to the president of the naacp, derek johnson, the civil rights leader was asked about the contrast between how police treated black lives matter protesters last year and how they treated the mob attacking the capitol on wednesday. here's what he said about the message that sends to americans. >> they're tone deaf to the threat that domestic terrorists present to this nation, particularly those that are members of the proud boys and white supremacist groups. at the naacp we have been ringing this bell fwhor a while now. we launched a campaign to get facebook to begin to address white supremacist groups and domestic terrorists. this president has created the space where people fear more emboldened. he started the administration with charlotteville, virginia,
and now in the final days, he's ending with the inciting treasonness acts with individuals who are domestic terrorists. >> sophia nelson is a senior columnist at the daily beast and former house republican investigative council and author of e pluribus one. we heard a lot of people over the last 24 hours saying this is not what america is. do you think that's correct, sadly, it actually is part of america, isn't it? >> absolutely, i mean, i think that one of the old sayings is the chickens have come home to roost, and yesterday in the capitol of the united states of america, that happened. some of the darkest impulses that we have had in our past history around mob violence, around riot, this was not protesters, this was not dissent, this was anger and mob
violence, and it was sedition, and we need to call it what it was and what it is so that we can heal from it and move forward. >> president-elect joe biden echoed what i think a lot of people think earlier on thursday. let's just play that for people. >> no one can tell me if it had been a group of black lives matter protesting yesterday, they wouldn't have been treated very very differently than the mob of thugs that stormed the capitol. we all know that's true, and it is unacceptable. totally unacceptable. >> yeah, and you know, it was pretty easy for protesters, let's face it, to get in to the building, get into the chambers, and then appallingly in most places just stroll out. many of them laughing and smiling. how different do you think that the response would have been if
this had been black lives matters protesters or muslim protesters for that matter and not donald trump supporters. >> i think we know the answer to that question when you go back to this past summer, with the protest protesters around the death, the murder of george floyd, when people wanted to assemble at the lincoln memorial with the march on washington in 1963, and the million man marches, they had the national guard out, and it looked like some type of military coup was about to happen, and the same thing happened as they marched in front of the white house. the president called out military units, tear gas was fired, and rubber bullets were fired. i worked at the capitol as a younger woman as an attorney and committee council and i never thought i would see something like what we all witnessed yesterday. >> and in fact, you have spoken about the differences in life experiences in america. you wrote on the grio web site,
which people can go and read there, i just want to read for people, you said this quote, the reality is that these trump supporters who engaged in insurrection and sedition on wednesday were not being oppressed. they lost an election. in our american system of governance, somebody wins and somebody loses. they don't know what oppression looks like. explain that some more. >> well, it's what we were just talking about. if you go back to the reason why the black nfl players were kneeling, for example, they were kneeling in protest for police violence of killing black men, right, and then you go to black lives matter, that movement grew out of the michael brown situation, and other deaths and murders of black men who were unarmed, and the people that were protesting there, were doing so for their lives. breonna taylor, right, in louisville, rather, i'm sorry, she was, you know, shot while in her bed watching tv with a no knock warrant, and so there's a
difference between protesting because my life is in danger or i don't feel that you're treating me justly versus i'm protesting because i think my candidate lost an election that he really didn't lose. those are two very different reasons to protest, and again, that was not protests, it was riot, and it was domestic terrorism. >> great to get your perspective. really appreciate it. sophia nelson, thank you so much. >> thank you so much. >> much more to come here on cnn, including the reaction of international leaders to those shocking scenes wednesday on capitol hill. savor this. we'll be right back. see every delivery...
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now, donald trump of course has only 12 days remaining as u.s. president, a fact he's finally acknowledged two months after losing the presidential election. but after inciting a mob of supporters to storm the u.s. capitol on wednesday, some u.s. officials and lawmakers say he should leave office before january 20. at least five people died in the mayhem, including a capitol police officer, a female annu agitator was shot by police as rioters tried to break down the day. numerous have resigned in the wake of the protests, including betsy devos, and transportation secretary elaine chao. others laid the blame directly
at the feet of donald trump, and some adversaries took the opportunity to gloat. cnn international diplomatic editor nic robertson joins me now from london with more. speaking of gloeating, i suppos the state department wouldn't like it when they're getting sympathy from turkey, cuba and venezuela. >> and they're also hearing that, you know, countries like china and the baltic states in europe, lithuania, estonia are warning their citizens in washington, d.c. to, you know, stay at home. be vigilant and be careful, and it's not the sort of image that the united states wants to have, and it has very clearly been an opportunity for the united states enemies to take very pointed digs at the united states for their own national agendas, for their own sort of ability to project themselves be it china, be it russia, as the sort of moral authorities and
the leaders, you know, trying to sort of point to the united states as a less than strong nation, but i think perhaps most of all what was surprising here was the number of world leaders that responded to what they saw and just how quickly they responded as well. on nightly newscasts, the world watched america's democracy falter. as we filmed, protesters tore down pelosi's name plate. and so here we are right now inside the halls of congress. >> in the after math, newspapers showering shame on the embers of trump's presidency. world leaders damming in their response. >> what president trump has been saying about that has been completely wrong, and i unreservedly condemn encouraging people to behave in the disgraceful way that they did in the capitol.
>> translator: the basic rule of democracy is after the election there are winners and losers, both have to play their role with decency and responsibility so that democracy itself remains the winner. i regret very much that president trump did not admit defeat in november and again yesterday. >> close allies wondering how it came to this. >> they're a great friend of australia, and they're one of the world's greatest democracies, so our thoughts are with them, and we hope for that peaceful transition to take place. >> reporter: on twitter, both norway's and sweden's prime ministers directly blaming president trump. heavy responsibility now rests on president trump, solberg wrote. president trump and several members of congress bear substantial responsibility wrote stephan loughlin. from canada to chile, norway to
greece, india to australia and new zealand, global leaders vented worries. sadness, his or her republicorr is watching, common themes. these leaders know what happens in america has a trickle down effect on the rest of the world. they worry about how this can influence democracy going forward. these are real concerns. meanwhile, america's enemies seemingly scoring points. in china, taking some apparent sarcastic satisfaction. >> >> translator: we hope that the american people can enjoy peace, stability, and security as soon as possible. >> reporter: and in moscow, a tv anchor reading a foreign ministry statement. the reason behind the divide in american society lies also in the archaic electoral system, yet perhaps most striking, some allies still held back from
blaming trump directly. >> the rampage at the capitol yesterday was a disgraceful act and it must be vigorously condemned. i have no doubt that american democracy will prevail. >> what happened in washington is not america, definitely. we believe in the strength of our democracies. we believe in the strength of american democracy. >> reporter: everyone, it seems, counting on president-elect joe biden to make it all better. and in the first year of his presidency, joe biden has said that he will call for a global summit on democracy shoring up its values, and there's a reality here that there is a rise of nationalism and populism in democratic nations around the
world. it hasn't happened in isolation in the united states, certainly president trump has fed into the growth of it, in some of the european nations but the reality is that, you know, democrats and democratic forces around the world feel that this is a very real threat, and joe biden says that it will take this on. but cleaning house in the united states, of its image around the world on this is not going to be an easy task. >> good point. fascinating report, nic, thank you, nic robertson in london. former republican secretary of state and retired general colin powell speaking to cnn's wolf blitzer about this insurrection. here's what he said about the message it sends around the globe. >> how do you think foreign adversaries, whether the russians, the chinese, the north koreans, iranians, venezuela, what they're seeing here in the united states. they're watching all of this unfold, and people are watching us right now all over the world,
how are they react to this? >> they're watching with great interest and they can't believe we have done this to ourselves. that's the gift from mr. putin, i know quite well. we like to pick on them and say things are not good, and suddenly they're looking at the united states of america, and people are running through the capitol building. i have never seen them run through the capitol buildings of the russian federation. they're smiling and say see, the americans are not as big and bad as they would like to make themselves out to be. they're going to be surprised. they're going to discover we're going to rebound rather quickly. i believe once we settle the problem of these people who are out there and whatever they came from, arrest them, put them in jail or run them off but clean out the place, and once we settle down, and frankly, once mr. trump is no longer the president of the united states of america and we have other people in the government and we have a new president, i think things will settle down quickly.
the big problem that i have with all of this is that where was the congress in all of this? in all of the things that we have been doing, the congress just went along with mr. trump and usually it was just the republican side, but there was some things we did that showed that the congress was not ready to do its duty. >> tim naftali, cnn presidential historian, and director of the nixon presidential library joins me from new york. it's great to get a historical perspective, tim, is it fair to say this has been the first time in american history where a president has actively opposed a peaceful transition of power? i mean, how extraordinary was what happened at the capitol in a historical sense? >> well, yesterday's insurrection was unprecedented in american history. it broke a perfect run of -- in
the modern era of peaceful transitions and it echoed, it's not a parallel, but it echoed the transition of 1860, '61 which was not peaceful. during that transition, that was leading up to the inauguration of abraham lincoln. the states of the confederacy seceded. in the modern era, the united states has enjoyed a series of peaceful and for the most part successful transitions. >> we have seen extraordinary and let's face it, frightening displays by some of the president's supporters. i'm curious for your perspective on whether these people can come together with the rest of the country's healing. are there lessons we can learn from history, perhaps what happened after the civil war.
>> here's the challenge, my view for the united states for my country. it's to try to merge these two bubbles, these reality -- these different worlds of fact into one world so that the president's supporters. by the way, the people that participated in the insurrection yesterday are a more challenging lot to try to reintegrate to the rest of the country. but the bulk of the president's supporters have not had access or have rejected information that at least 80 million adults accept, and the challenge -- you can't have a national dialogue.
you can't have one political community if you have a different set of facts. and the great challenge here is not to make everyone think like, you don't want that. you want a healthy conservative option and a healthy liberal option or liberal progressive option. you want a agara, a political marketplace. >> i wanted to ask you finally, and quickly, if you will, this sort of speaks to in some ways the nation will survive but it speaks to the fragility of democracy in a historical sense. americans always speak of being the greatest country, the greatest system, naively, perhaps, but how much of a jolt does wednesday give to that notion? >> well, i think what's fragile are constitutions, because remember that constitutions are a way of protecting minority
groups, defined in different ways. religious groups, people of color, people with different political views, protecting them from mobs, from the majority, and that's what's fragile is keeping -- protecting people from groups in society that are in one way or another liberal, in other words, contrary to rights and freedoms. what we saw yesterday was a group, a mob, that wanted to deprive everybody else of their rights because they had defined the united states and if you didn't accept their definition of the united states, they didn't care. >> tim naftali, got to leave it there. thank you so much. >> my pleasure, michael. well, the u.s. has just broken a new record. when we come back, a deadly milestone in the pandemic.
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in the last two weeks, the u.s. recorded its five deadliest days since the coronavirus pandemic began. on thursday more than 4,000 deaths in a day. that is the highest number recorded in a single day, according to johns hopkins university. and a new study showing pfizer covid-19 vaccine does appear to be effective against those two new coronavirus variants, which is good news. cnn's nick watt now on how vaccine distribution is going in the u.s. >> bottom line, this vaccine rollout is nowhere near as fast or efficient as promised or projected. >> this and other sites are going to have to really ramp up
to get this done. >> it's now more than three weeks since the first shots, but as of wednesday morning, the cdc reports just 5.3 million first doses have actually been administered. at that rate, it could take nearly three years for this country to reach herd immunity. early hiccups were expected. the holidays didn't help. >> i think it would be fair to just observe what happens in the next couple of weeks. if we don't catch up on what the original goal was, then we really need to make some changes. >> the pace will pick up, but by how much? >> all of this speaks to a failed leadership from the very top of american government, and here we are in january breaking records. >> reporter: this past week, more than 1 1/2 million new cases confirmed. the worst week so far. and more than 50 cases of that
more contagious variant first found in the u.k. now confirmed in at least eight states. there will be many more. >> we have to pay attention to it. we can't just blow it off. >> reporter: the cdc just released a study detailing how college parties fueled the first surge, 54 gatherings at the university of arkansas connected to covid cases. dr. fauci gave axios some factors that hindered our early response, the lack of transparency from china and political divisiveness at home. >> it doesn't make any difference what happens. >> you know what i say, if they don't treat you right, i don't call. >> nick watt, cnn, los angeles. now, america's most populous state remains the one worst hit by this pandemic, california seeing record hospitalizations, surging deaths and a health care system under tremendous strain.
the los angeles county public health director calls it a crisis of epic proportions. the l.a. mayor, eric garcetti says the number of people dying from the virus in a single day in l.a. equals the number of homicides in the city during an entire year. it took a siege on the u.s. capitol for social media companies to finally take significant action against president trump. later this hour, what platforms are doing to police mr. trump's misinformation going forward. we'll be right back. chances are you have some questions right now
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social media platforms are taking different approaches to punishing president trump following wednesday's mob attack on the u.s. capitol, but some critics say they waited too long. mr. trump is already now back on twitter after deleting the required tweets to unlock his account. twitter has warned future violations, though, could come with a permanent ban. cnn's anna stewart is in london with more details for us. yeah, back on twitter, but for how long? >> well, one more strike and the
president is out from twitter. that is what that company has said. he did post a video message yesterday. it had a much more conciliatory tone and will have to stay that way. the president is banned temporarily from facebook and instagram to the end of his presidency, and perhaps longer. it could be an indefinite ban, and i think the strongest statement we had was possibly the one from facebook ceo mark zuckerberg. he said that allowing the president to continue to use their platform would simply pose too great a risk to the public. this is a social media firm saying that they have a responsibility here to protect the public from the president. now, there are plenty of critics out there who say perhaps social media firms should have felt this responsibility sooner, perhaps they could have done more. and some people want to see the president banned from social media platforms permanently right from now. and one of those people is former first lady, michelle obama. she released a lengthy statement
on twitter yesterday amongst which she said now is the time for silicon valley companies to stop enabling this monstrous behavior and go even further than they have already by permanently banning this man from their platforms. now, up to wednesday, social media platforms like twitter, like facebook, had to either take him down specific tweets or posts from the president or labeled them as inaccurate or having within them a statement that was disputed. the first time we have seen a temporary ban from a social media platform was following wednesday, and cynics point to the timing of all of this, just after president-elect joe biden was confirmed by congress and unfortunately, of course, after those violent scenes we saw on the capitol. perhaps more could have been done. it's not just silicon valley that are acting and speaking out. >> we lost anna stewart there, but i think we got the gist of it all. thanks for your company, everyone. we're out of time anyway.
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suitcases for less than $40. and shipping is always free. go to dealdash.com right now and see how much you can save. welcome to our viewers in the united states and all around the world. this is "early start," i'm laura jarrett. >> good morning, laura, i'm christine romans. it's friday, january 8th. 5:00 a.m. exactly in new york. and so much for the end of american carnage. overnight, capitol police confirming the death of one of their officers. brian sicknick, injured, responding to the insurrection at the u.s. capitol.